We created an OPTO-NAVI system as a multi-purpose remote controller for home information appliances based on an augmented reality using image information. The system uses a custom CMOS image sensor with a function for detecting high-speed optical ID signals from home information appliances, which are depicted as icons on the OPTO-NAVI terminal and are superimposed on a scene image. The advantage of the system is that these home information appliances can be intuitively operated, much like window systems. A framework for software and hardware of the OPTO-NAVI system under the networking environment is described. Detection and decoding of ID signals and a method for stable icon-displaying are also described. We show an experimental system with OPTO-NAVI using Hyper-Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP) and demonstrate its basic double-click and drag-and-drop operations.
We describe a new on-line AR system using multiple planar markers placed at arbitrary positions and directions. In most marker-based approaches, the markers' 3D positions and directions need to be measured in advance because they need to define a virtual object's coordinate in one fixed 3D coordinate system. However, such measurement is a very difficult and time-consuming task especially when the markers are in a complex arrangement or are placed in a wide space. Thus, we created a new on-line AR system that does not have any information on the geometrical relationship of the markers. In our registration method, we construct projective 3D space using two reference images, in which we can estimate the geometrical relationship of the multiple markers. By defining the virtual object's coordinate in projective space, this coordinate can be represented in one fixed 3D coordinate system for each frame. We performed some experiments to demonstrate the effectiveness of our system. A virtual object was superimposed onto input image sequences captured with a handy camera. Because the multiple markers were placed in a wide area, the virtual objects could easily move around the real world. Moreover, the registration could be carried out stably because the markers face various directions and because some of them can always be recognized from most viewpoints.
A large-screen 3D display that is glass-free and has smooth motion parallax can be constructed with a 2D array of 3D pixels that generates high-density directional images. It is showed that ∼700 and ∼3,000 directional images should be displayed in different horizontal directions for display screen sizes of 10.0×7.5 m and 20.0×7.5 m, respectively. The complexity of wiring an array of 3D pixels that can display such a large number of images can be dramatically reduced by introducing a modular structure. A 3D pixel module, which is a 2D array of 3D pixels, consists of an array of modified 2D aligned light source arrays, an array of cylindrical lenses, and a control circuit. While a custom light source array is actually needed to display the number of images mentioned above, we used conventional LCD panels as light source arrays in this study. Although the number of directional images was thus limited, we were able to verify the operating princple of 3D pixels and demonstrate the feasibility of using conventional LCD panels. The prototype module was constructed using 4×2 LCD panels to obtain 8×4 light source arrays. The module consisted of 8×4 3D pixels and was designed to display 300 different directional images. We found that only ∼50 images could be distinguished because the LCD panels had considerable pixel crosstalk caused by the RGB delta pixel structure.
Digital still cameras require both accuracy with the focal function and quick response. We developed a new focus home position detection system that consists of two algorithms. The first, the home position judging algorithm, detects the home position as the level of the photo sensor changes, and it memorizes the excitation position of the stepping motor for the lens drive. When it detects the home position again, it judges the level change of a photo sensor in the excitation position distant from the memorized excitation position by a half of an excitation pattern cycle. It then reproduces the original home position. The second algorithm, the temperature compensation algorithm, makes the memorized excitation position follow the temperature change. The new system cancels out any home position error by the camera posture difference and improves the initialization time (by about 0.3 seconds). We introduced this system into our camera DMC-LC1.
The experimental production of an ergonomic evaluation system for stereoscopic 3-D images is described. The purpose of the system is to quantify the depth sensation of 3-D images and to evaluate them. Image processing was applied to compute the optical flow between right and left videos. The functionality of the system was examined by referring to previous reports and by conducting two experiments. The results of the improvement and the validity of the system in terms of 3-D image creation are reported.
We propose a video coding method for achieving desired subjective quality. In general, subjective video quality is most strongly affected by the section with the lowest quality. Therefore, to efficiently achieve the desired subjective quality, it is necessary to minimize the variation in subjective quality over time. This approach requires variable-bit-rate, variable-frame-rate video coding and methods for estimative subjective quality. We previously proposed such methods for temporal quality (motion smoothness) and spatial quality (quality of each frame). Applying these methods enables us to develop a simple method for achieving the desired subjective quality. We implemented the proposed method on the general MPEG-4 encoder. Experimental results show that this method achieves the desired quality.
We created an immersive auto-stereoscopic display, the Telexistence Wide-angle Immersive STEReoscope (TWISTER), and the previous version of TWISTER, TWISTER III can display full color immersive stereo images. But the resolution and refresh rate of TWISTER III is lower than those of ordinary displays, and some users felt fatigue or could not see stereo images. The main reason for the low resolution is the size of LEDs and a degradation of signals through a slipring. We introduce the design and development of the new TWISTER, which has smaller LEDs and optical data transfer using fiber optic rotary joints (FORJs).